Drug Operation Uncovered Within Veteran Affairs Facility in NY

On Wednesday, September 3, 2014, Robert Tucker and Eric Casiano appeared in Manhattan federal court to face charges of conspiracy to distribute and possess a controlled substance.

Tucker, a 64-year-old resident of the Bronx, New York, had been a warehouse and mail-center supervisor at the Department of Veterans Affairs in the Bronx. Casiano, a 29-year-old resident of West Orange, New Jersey, had been an agency pipe-fitter at this same location. Following a federal investigation, it was found that both men had been working together to operate a cocaine-dealing business out of the Veteran Affairs’ mail room for the past year.

The investigation was prompted by a suspicious package seized by U.S. Postal Inspectors in December 2013. The package, which was found to contain 2 kilograms of cocaine, had been addressed to the Bronx Medical Center’s warehouse.

Federal agents began conducting surveillance at the Department of Veterans Affairs, and subsequently observed Tucker retrieving a similar package from the Medical Center’s mail room on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. Tucker then brought the package to his office where Casiano exchanged it for $500 in cash.

Postal Inspectors later stopped out with Casiano as he was leaving the facility and discovered him to be in possession of 1 kilogram of cocaine.

Both men were federally charged for their crimes. Their exploitation of a facility dedicated to the care of wounded veterans is viewed as particularly deplorable.

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